10 notable deals and things to know this week (2024 โ€“ week #23)

Startup news and deals

๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐ŸŒž Iyris, a Saudi startup, raised $16M for its innovative solar glass technology designed to enhance the growth of fresh produce inside greenhouses in challenging climates.

๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡งย ๐Ÿ“ฆ Kelpi, a British startup, raised ยฃ4.3M for its seaweed-based alternatives to plastic. Its bio-coatings have multiple applications, notably to protect fresh fruits.

๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐ŸŒพ YoLa Fresh, a Moroccan startup, raised $7M for its platform, which facilitates the relationship between fresh produce farmers and food sellers (such as restaurants).

๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ช๐ŸดGrubTech, an Emirati startup, raised $15M for its set of tools to help restaurants manage their operations from deliveries to inventory. We observe the emergence of an interesting ecosystem of Agri-FoodTech startups in the Gulf region. This is supported by state funds, which heavily invest in order to attract talent. Itโ€™s a space to put on the map and which we hope to hear more about in the future.

๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐ŸŒพ OneOrder, an Egyptian startup, raised $16M to simplify supply chain management for restaurants and hotels. The startup wants to streamline this supply chain by centralising orders in its own warehouses and then delivering them in a single time to clients.

๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธย ๐ŸŸ Shinkei, a US-based startup, raised $6M for its fish processing technology, which combines both advanced automation and traditional Japanese ancestral techniques to achieve higher quality.

Regulation & public report

๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธย ๐Ÿฎย The FDA approved the use of DSM Bovaerโ€™s ingredient in US dairy farms. This ingredient (based on algae) reduces the amount of methane cows emit and is among the growing number of solutions experimented with to address one of the biggest โ€œclimate problemsโ€ of the food value chain.

Industry news & trends

๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡นย ๐Ÿถย BioCraft Pet Nutrition, an Austrian startup applying cellular agriculture for pet food, says it has reached price parity with โ€œpremium animal meatโ€ pet food. While the production is yet to be scaled up and the commercialisation to be authorised, this is good news in an otherwise quite gloomy alternative protein ecosystem. Also, we are getting more and more signals that pet food and higher-value ingredients (fats, sugars, chocolateโ€ฆ) may lead the way in terms of scale for cellular agriculture rather than meat.

๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ญย ๐Ÿšย A genetically modified rice (called Golden Rice) developed to combat vitamin A deficiency (a cause of thousands of deaths and disability among children) was blocked from being planted in the Philippines. This follows a campaign by Greenpeace and local farmers.

๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡นย ๐Ÿซย Ferrero announced that it will launch a plant-based Nutella in Italy this fall.

๐Ÿ” Hybrid products are back - is it a good idea?
Lessons from failed ecosystems

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